Sunday, August 18, 2013

Bubblegum Princess: Pinkberry Patch - Chapter 1: Tingle

Alyssa Alexander knew something was amiss the moment she slipped a piece of bubblegum in her mouth. Although the package said Pinkberry Patch, BubbleBop Girls' brand new flavor, it had a minty aftertaste that sent tingles down her spine. As she rubbed her arms to keep from freezing, her pearl skin began to glow.

"What's happening to me?" She noticed her unblemished skin. Years ago, when she was just a wee thing, she cut her hand on a glass, leaving behind a one inch scar that she would carry for the rest of her days. But as she passed her fingers over it, the mortal mark rubbed off--as if all she needed was a fine polishing. "No way." She gawked at her perfect skin.

"Miss Alexander, are you chewing gum in class?" said Beatris Blunt, a middle-aged woman with thick brown hair pulled back in a bun.

", ma'am," she replied.

The entire class turned and stared at her, a pair of girls snickering in the far corner.

"Really? Then what's that in your mouth?" The teacher tapped her foot.

"Oh, that. I was just chewing my nails." Alyssa tried her best to hide the gum.

"Those must be some really big nails."

"Yes, ma'am." Although mommy and daddy frowned whenever she talked with food in her mouth--even gum--Alyssa could carry on entire conversations without exposing the contents of her mouth.

"You really have a thing for eating fingernails. Is this part of some bizarre new health craze?" The old maid raised an eyebrow, evoking a fresh round of giggles.

"No, I just chew them whenever I get nervous."

"And what on earth could you possibly be nervous about?" Beatris stepped closer and crossed her arms.

Alyssa shrugged, but no words came out.

"Great heavens, child. What have you done to your hair?" said Ms. Blunt.

"What's wrong with my hair?" Alyssa grabbed a handful and gasped. No longer was it golden brown like her mother's; instead, it was strawberry pink, the very shade of bubblegum that she was trying to hide. As she caught her breath, she accidentally gulped down the minty morsel. "I think I'd better see the nurse."

"Yes...perhaps you should..." The teacher eyed her suspiciously.

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